Category Archives: Family

Family Film Time – May 2017

Every week we have enforced family film watching time. Its partly to try and have a couple of hours down time, partly to be able to share our love of film with our kids, partly to have a tradition we hopefully will continue in the future. We take turns to pick. The participants are currently 39, 37, 6 and 4.

Tangled

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A surprising choice from the oldest child. I really like Tangled as far as Disney cartoons go. The horse is great. But the end is infuriating *spoilers ahead* so the whole family got a massive rant about how it was wrong of the guy to take the choice away from Rapunzel about cutting her hair. How very rude and presumptuous of him.

Minions

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Minions are an entertaining watch for everyone. A safe choice by the littlest one this week.

the BFG

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Ooooh I love Roald Dahl. Shame this version of the BFG is boring AF. *yawns*

We nearly watched:

Long Way North

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which looks AMAZING. It looks beautiful and is 5* film. Of course I hadn’t realised there would be quite so many subtitles. Considering one viewer is 4, and can’t read, it was quickly decided to shelve it and try something else. I panic chose and we ended up with:

Shark Boy and Lava Girl

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It’s actually quite good. And yes, that is a very young Taylor Lautner, of Twilight fame. I’m Team Run Away You Don’t Need Either Of Them btw

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I’m so sorry

Family Film Time – April 2017

Every week we have enforced family film watching time. Its partly to try and have a couple of hours down time, partly to be able to share our love of film with our kids, partly to have a tradition we hopefully will continue in the future. We take turns to pick. The participants are currently 39, 37, 6 and 4.

Back to the Future III

You can’t watch the first two and then leave the third. I love BTTFIII, I think it’s the second best one. The Western element, but with the story having all the echoes of the other films. This was much better for the little people than the second film. They understood that this was a long time ago and they were trying to get back to modern times.

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The kids loved loads of the action, especially the finale, and they went nuts when they saw the flying time travel train at the end!

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4 year old imparted some wisdom during the scene where Buford Tannen has lassoed Marty and is dragging him around the town.

Ben Elf has a lassoo, but he uses it for good. He resues people with it. That man is doing bad things with his lassoo.

Be like Ben Elf.

Back to the Future II

Kids were so confused by the time travel plot they barely noticed everyone saying shit all the time.

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When I was 10, I went to a fancy dress party at the Doc in his future clothes.

The biggest source of amusement was that this future, was 2 years ago. I think that contributed to general confusion from the small people.

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where is the hoverboard I was promised by 2015?

Pup Star

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Dogs singing, missing owners, dog bounty hunters, adventures, more dogs singing, stray dogs finding their perfect owners, a Simon Cowell dog. So clearly chosen by a 4 year old.

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Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey

My choice because I thought we needed to watch something wholesome after last week’s Back to the Future bad language fest. Animals going on a journey. Sentimental. Safe.

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Martin Creed Exhibition – Harris Museum and Gallery, Preston.

Art is great. I’m no expert, and I think a lot of it is total BS. But it’s all still brilliant. It’s become particularly brilliant since I’ve been taking my children to art galleries.

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neon excellence.

This Easter week we went to a Martin Creed exhibition at The Harris Museum and Art Gallery in Preston. There were paintings that looked very simple (like my 4 year old daughter could have done them), a line of cacti,  a light going off and on in a room, a video of people with different disabilities, unaided, getting across a zebra crossing, and a video of people making themselves sick on a floor (ewwww). Immediately we had a conversation about what is art. Everything can be art. My son, who is 6, said ‘art is creativity’ and I felt a bit smug. A bit ‘good job done’.

The next day my daughter asked me why some people have legs that don’t work. I didn’t realise at first that she was thinking about the zebra crossing video from the previous day. I got the link when she sat on the floor and started trying to move herself across the kitchen using her hands to lift herself back a little bit, like one of the people from the video. She was narrating it all, talking about it being difficult, wondering what could make someone’s legs not work, thinking about wheelchairs.

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small child fascinated by videos of people being sick.

I never expected my children to mention what they saw again. We didn’t spend a lot of time there, and we certainly didn’t try and read all the descriptions. Just mooched about having a look, wanting them to just know these things exist and art isn’t just realistic looking paintings and sculptures. I think art should make you think, and this did just that.

The exhibition is on at the Harris Museum and Art Gallery in Preston until 3rd June.

Family Film Time – March 2017

Every week we have enforced family film watching time. Its partly to try and have a couple of hours down time, partly to be able to share our love of film with our kids, partly to have a tradition we hopefully will continue in the future. We take turns to pick. The participants are currently 39, 37, 6 and 4.

Back to the Future

Oh wow. We are in epic, amazing film territory here. Share one of the best films ever with your kids too, but be aware you will also teach them to say ‘son of a bitch!’, ‘bastard!’ and ‘shit!’ (potentially worth it to get out of having to watch another Pokemon film this week).

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OMG repeat to self: PG films from the 80s have bad language in them. PG films from the 80s have bad language in them. PG films from the 80s have really bad language in them.

You’ll also have to explain what Libyans are, why they might want plutonium, and also wtf incest is.

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Despite all that minor stuff, this is STILL ONE OF THE BEST FILMS EVER and everyone, obviously, loved it. Success! Although my husband seems to have adopted a Marty McFly checked shirt, life preserver combo since we viewed this last week. Hmm.

The Little Mermaid

A 16 year old mermaid is willing to give up her friends and family for a chance with a man she’s glimpsed once. Adventure happens, then she is sent off , in human form, to marry him in the end. Still, for an oldish Disney film, it’s alright.

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Surprisingly, my children found Ursula a bit more frightening than any of Lemony Snicket’s a Series of Unfortunate Events. Weird.

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Ursula is the best character in The Little Mermaid

Now while l was googling for Little Mermaid pictures, I found this. The Northern Ballet’s version of the Little Mermaid. Looks amazing! Just wish it was touring a little nearer to where I live.

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Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events

I had serious misgivings about this choice from my husband. It looks blinkin’ scary! It was all alright in the end though. Every one liked this film, especially the baby that bites things.

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Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit

I love this so much. There’s plenty of jokes for the grown ups and loads of fun for the kids too. Wallace and Gromit can do no wrong.

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And don’t forget the super cute bunnies!

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Family Film Time – February 2017

Every week we have enforced family film watching time. Its partly to try and have a couple of hours down time, partly to be able to share our love of film with our kids, partly to have a tradition we hopefully will continue in the future. We take turns to pick. The participants are currently 38, 37, 6 and 4.

Hotel Transylvania

This was my choice and it is a great film. There are a couple of scary bits (when Dracula gets a bit worked up and does a scary face). I was a bit concerned the 4 year old might not like that, but she was fine.

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Dracula has set up a hotel for all the supernatural creatures safely away from humans. Then a back packer stumbles upon the hotel and wants to stay…

Dracula also has a daughter, Mavis, he is desperately trying to protect from the world. She is getting older and wants some independence. This is also the story of them adjusting to their new relationship. I loved the character of Mavis, and overall really enjoyed this film.

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Explorers

This is our childhood nostalgia film for the month 😀 Not mine, I’d never seen it before. It was enough for me that it has a very young Ethan Hawke and River Phoenix in. So cute! It’s the debut film for both of them.

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The plot is that these teenage inventors build a spaceship and explore space, encountering aliens. The internet tells me there were big production troubles with the film and it was rushed to be finished. You can tell! It starts off with so much promise, then just goes a bit crazy towards the end.

I’ll be honest though, I fell asleep just as they had discovered how to make an unlimited source of oxygen, then when I woke, there were these crazy, vagina faced, aliens everywhere.

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Hotel for dogs

I went into this with quite low expectations, and then I LOVED IT!

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There are orphans, cute dogs, amazing gadgets, evil foster parents, sweet romance, and a very silly plot. What more could you want?  This film was universally loved by all of us (and we don’t even really like dogs in real life 🙂 ) It even made me cry at the end – a sure sign that I have actually really enjoyed a film and have got emotionally invested.

As a superb bonus, there is a big action sequence in the middle with an amazing Tim Armstrong song accompanying it. Heaven.

Pokemon – Hoopa and the Clash of Ages

I tried to follow the plot, really I did. In fact, I think I was the only one left watching it at the end. Two other family members were snoozing, including the 6 year old who chose this film. There were murmurings of ‘I know how it ends… I’ve seen it before’.

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I really would only really recommend this if you are already heavily invested in the world of Pokemon 🙂

Family Films – January

We’ve started a weekly family film in my household. Two hours a week where we hope to get some peace and quiet, while also subjecting our children to films we loved ourselves as children, only to be painfully disappointed and also shocked at the content of 80s films we thought would be kid friendly. Note to self: the 12 and 12A rating didn’t exist in the 80s, so PGs cover up to the 15 category.

For context, my children are 6 1/2 and 4. We are taking turns to pick the films.

Labyrinth

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Yes! My choice of film. Labyrinth is a marvellous film. Jim Henson puppets, David Bowie as the Goblin King, an Escher style maze, and a race against time for 15 year old Sarah (Jennifer Connelly) to get back her baby brother who the Goblin King has kidnapped. There’s brilliant, funny puppets. Peril! The Goblin King and a cute baby dancing with the puppet goblins. Ludo. Hoggle. And let’s not forget David Bowie and his magnificent pants.

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A brilliant film for everyone!

Zootropolis

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Completely brilliant. We all loved this film about a little rabbit becoming the first rabbit police officer. Normally, it’s just the large animals that get to be cops. In Zootropolis (Zootopia for US audiences) animals are living together in harmony. There’s a scandal erupting about predators ‘going wild’ and Judy Hopps (our bunny hero) must investigate with the help of  Nick Wilde, a sneaky fox (or is he?).

Full Out

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It’s main saving grace was that the littlest family member chose the film this week and it was nearly Nativity again.

This is a TV Movie about a gymnast who has a terrible accident and misses out on her chance at olympic glory. She’s not recovering very well and so joins a hip hop dancing group, obviously. Then she goes back to gymnastics and is great again.

It really wasn’t that bad. 🙂

Batman – Mask of the Phantasm

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I’m so sorry, I had a tiny bit of a hangover this day and I fell asleep during family film time. I will, sadly, never know what this film is about.

Family Films – December 2016

We’ve started a weekly family film in my household. Two hours a week where we hope to get some peace and quiet, while also subjecting our children to films we loved ourselves as children, only to be painfully disappointed and also shocked at the content of 80s films we thought would be kid friendly. Note to self: the 12 and 12A rating didn’t exist in the 80s, so PGs cover up to the 15 category.

For context, my children are 6 1/2 and 4. We are taking turns to pick the films.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

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sums up the mood of the film

What the hell were we thinking! It’ll be fine, it won’t be that bad. We watched and enjoyed the first few films. I knew this one was a bit darker… and it’s a good film.  Well, we got through it with me increasingly judging myself for letting this happen in front of the children. We didn’t let them watch the Voldemort scene. Luckily the little one had drifted off from watching it at this point. I won’t let them watch it again even though my son asks eveeerryyyy day 🙂

All I Want For Christmas

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sickly sweet

The 1991 film. Alright christmassy film. Without controversy.

Scrooged

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yeh… was a bit scary! 

Well the grown ups liked this one more than the kids. I think. But blimey, some quite scary bits. Especially the creatures under the Ghost of Christmas Future’s cloak! Aaarghh. We just forcibly put our hands over our children’s eyes for this bit, which was obviously helpful to the relaxing atmosphere during film time.

Nativity

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grumpy teacher mode – like me most days at work

Great Christmas film. Everyone loved it because it’s brilliant.

Pokemon: Arceus and the Jewel of Life.

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some incomprehensible nonsense

Dear god, 2 hours I won’t get back. There’s these creatures, and some sort of fighting, and dimensions and a jewel. And then it was over. Hooray! Clearly chosen by a 6 year old.